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Koinh, Greek

Origins of Koine Greek

Koinh, Greek • Origins of Koine Greek www.exegeticaltools.com • Greek belongs to the Indo-European (or

Greek belongs to the Indo-European (or Indo-Hittite) language group as one of its ten branches (two are extinct [Ruhlen, Guide to the World's Languages, 35]). Earlier Greek grammarians may have called the language group "Indo-Germanic" and may only mention the eight living languages or branches (e.g., Robertson, New Short Grammar, 5-6).

Linear B spans from the thirteenth century BC to the 8th century BC.

Koine Greek spans from about 300 BC to 330 AD.

Byzantine Greek spans from 330-1453.

Modern Greek spans from 1453-present (Robertson, 8).

Koine evolved from Attic Greek, which itself descended from Ionic. Ionic is one of the three Greek dialects, the other two being Doric and Aeolic. Attic was the language of classical literary Greek.

Alphabet

The Greek alphabet, like the Hebrew alphabet, was derived from the Phoenicians.

Sophistication of Koine Greek

Older scholars, especially classical Greek scholars (e.g., scholars of Homer, Sophocles, Herodotus, Thucydides, Plato, Aristotle, etc.), tended to denigrate the Greek of the New Testament as unsophisticated. Some said it was a sort of "Holy Ghost language," unlike normal Koine Greek, and full of Semitisms (e.g., foreign perversions of the language).

However, at the beginning of the twentieth century, Adolf Deissmann published two works, Bible Studies and Light from the Ancient Near East. Both works studied Greek in comparison with newly discovered evidence of Koine Greek. He puts forth papyri, inscriptions on tombstones, letters, and various other inscriptions from the Koine period to show that the NT was actually written in the common language of the day and was not inferior Greek. He states that “the records of the world contemporary with the New Testament” “supply us with the right standard of criticism” (Light, 146). The New Testament is therefore written in the standard Koine Greek of its day and is in no way inferior to the Greek of any period (similarly, Robertson, 10-11).

to the Greek of any period (similarly, Robertson, 10-11). • Spread of Greek Language • Attic

Spread of Greek Language

Attic Greek (and Hellenistic culture, with it) spread throughout the entire ancient world when Alexander the Great conquered virtually everything. By the time of the NT, Attic Greek had evolved into Koine Greek, which had become the common language of the ancient world.

Greek, which had become the common language of the ancient world. Alexander the Great Exegetical Tools

Alexander the Great

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 1

The Alphabet

Capital

Lower Case

Name

Pronunciation

A

a

Alpha

a

(father)

B

b

Beta

b

G

g

Gamma

g

D

d

Delta

d

E

e

Epsilon

e

(bet)

Z

z

Zeta

z

H

h

Eta

a

(gate)

Q

q

Theta

th

I

i

Iota

i (thin)

K

k

Kappa

k

L

l

Lambda

l

M

m

Mu

m

N

n

Nu

n

X

x

Xi

x

(ks)

O

o

Omicron

o

(poridge)

P

p

Pi

p

R

r

Ro

r

S

s

(j) 1

Sigma

s

T

t

Tau

t

U

u

Upsilon

u

(loot)

F

f

Phi

ph (f)

C

c

Chi

ch (Bach)

Y

y

Psi

ps

W

w

Omega

o

(low)

1 Sigma appears as s, except at the end of a word, where it appears as j.

Diphthongs

Accents and Breathing Marks

ai

ai (aisle)

ei

long a (eight)

oi

oi (toy)

au

ow (ow)

eu

eu (feud)

ou

oo (lewd)

ui

wee (queen)

v

Smooth Breathing Mark

`

Rough Breathing Mark

,

Accute Accent

.

Grave Accent

/

Circumflex

Punctuation

Accent . Grave Accent / Circumflex Punctuation www.exegeticaltools.com lo,goj) Period lo,goj(

lo,goj)

Period

lo,goj(

Comma

lo,goj*

Question Mark

lo,goj\

Colon

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 2

8 Noun Rules

The following 8 noun rules come from Mounce's The Basics of Biblical Greek, 344.

come from Mounce's The Basics of Biblical Greek , 344. www.exegeticaltools.com 1. Stems ending in a

1. Stems ending in a or h are in the 1st declension; stems ending in o are in the 2nd declension; consonantal stems are 3rd declension.

2. Every neuter word has the same form in the nominative and the accusative.

3. Almost all neuter words end in a in the nominative and accusative plural.

4. In the dative singular, the iota subscripts if possible (the iota can only subscript under a vowel, so it cannot subscript in the third declension).

5. Vowels often change their length ("ablaut")

6. In the genitive and dative, the masculine and neuter will always be identical.

7. The Square of Stops (see other notes).

8. t cannot stand at the end of a word and will drop off.

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Cases

Nominative

Cases • Nominative www.exegeticaltools.com • Nouns in the nominative case function as subjects or predicate

Nouns in the nominative case function as subjects or predicate nominatives (in "John is a man," "man" is a predicate nominative).

Examples

John 1:1: o` lo,goj h=n pro.j to.n qeo,n. The nominative noun o` lo,goj ("the word") functions as the subject of the sentence "the word was with God."

Accusative

Nouns in the accusative case function as direct objects of verbs or as objects of prepositions.

Examples

John 1:1: o` lo,goj h=n pro.j to.n qeo,n. The accusative to.n qeo,n functions as the object of the preposition pro.j.

John 1:14: evqeasa,meqa th.n do,xan auvtou/. The accusative th.n do,xan ("the glory") functions as the direct object of the verb evqeasa,meqa ("we beheld").

Two accusatives may stand together, in which case one may be an object complement. For example, in the sentence "I painted the wall red," the direct object is "the wall" while "red" is an object complement.

Examples

Matt 22:43: pw/j ou=n Daui.d evn pneu,mati kalei/ auvto.n ku,rion ("how then does David, in the Spirit, call him Lord?"). The accusative pronoun auvto.n is the direct object, while ku,rion is the object complement.

Lev 13:10: kai. au[th mete,balen tri,ca leukh,n ("and [if] this [wound] turns the hair white").

Gentive

Nouns in the genitive case function to express relationships to other nouns such as possession, source, and separation. The genitive is often translated with "of" in front of the noun. However, the word "of" is very ambiguous and can mean any variety of relationships. For beginning Greek, the translation "of" is good enough.

Examples

John 1:4: h` zwh. h=n to. fw/j tw/n avnqrw,pwn ("the life was the light of men"). The genitive noun tw/n avnqrw,pwn may in this case be translated as "of men."

Dative

Nouns in the dative case function to express relationships to other nouns or verbs such as location, instrumentality, or indirect object.

Examples

John 1:5: to. fw/j evn th/| skoti,a| fai,nei ("the light is shining in the darkness"). The noun th/| skoti,a| functions to express the location of the shining, "in the darkness."

Vocative

The vocative is a case in Greek which signals direct address. In English, one may signal direct address with "O" (e.g., "O, Lord …") or without "O" (e.g., "Lord, …").

Examples

Matthew 8:25: ku,rie( sw/son( avpollu,meqa ("Lord, save, we are perishing!"). The noun ku,rie ("Lord") is in the vocative case, signaling direct address of the Lord.

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 4

Nominative

Subject: The subject of the main verb of the sentence.

• Subject: The subject of the main verb of the sentence. www.exegeticaltools.com  Example: o` lo,goj

Example: o` lo,goj h=n pro.j to.n qeo,n, “the word was with God” (John 1:1). The nominative noun o` lo,goj ("the word") functions as the subject of the sentence.

Predicate Nominative:

Definition: A nominative noun that is equated with the subject. The predicate nominative may be a larger subset of which the subject is a part (e.g., “John is a man”), or it may be directly equivalent (“Jesus is God’s Son”).

Identification: The PN is usually the known entity, which may be a relative pronoun, the articular noun, or a proper noun.

Example: o[j evstin eivkw.n tou/ qeou/ tou/ avora,tou, "he is the image of the invisible God” (Col 1:15). The nominative eivkw.n functions as the predicate nominative, virtually equating “he” with “image.”

Syntactical Equivalents: The predicate nominative can also appear as “eivj + accusative.”

E.g., ou-to,j evstin o` li,qoj

become the cornerstone.” Here, the phrase eivj kefalh.n gwni,aj functions as a PN.

o` geno,menoj eivj kefalh.n gwni,aj, “this is the stone that has

Nominative in Simple Apposition

Definition: “An appositional construction involves (1) two adjacent substantives (2) in the same case, (3) which refer to the same person or thing, (4) and have the same syntactical relation to the rest of the clause” (Wallace, Greek Grammar, 48).

Example: o[j evstin avrch,( prwto,tokoj evk tw/n nekrw/n, “he is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead” (Col 1:18). 1

Nominative Absolute

Definition: “The nominative absolute is the use of the nominative case in introductory material (such as titles, headings, salutations, and addresses), which are not to be construed as sentences” (Wallace, Greek Grammar, 49).

Pendant Nominative

Definition: “This nominative substantive is the logical rather than syntactical subject at the beginning of a sentence, followed by a sentence in which this subject is now replaced by a pronoun in the case required by the syntax” (Wallace, Greek Grammar, 51).

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 5

Vocative

Vocative www.exegeticaltools.com • The vocative is a case in Greek which signals direct address. In English,

The vocative is a case in Greek which signals direct address. In English, one may signal direct address with "O" (e.g., "O, Lord …") or without "O" (e.g., "Lord, …").

The vocative forms in Greek are often easily recognizable from the context, but there are some rules to learn for its forms.

When vocatives are plural, the form is the same as the nominative plural (e.g., avdelfoi,).

For the singular first declension, the vocative form is the same as the nominative singular (e.g., avdelfh,).

For the singular second declension, the vocative form generally ends in e (e.g., avpo,stole).

For the singular third declension, the vocative form is generally the word's stem (e.g., pa,ter).

There are exceptions to these rules, but they are rare.

The vocative occurs in the NT 564 times as a noun, 1 time as a participle, and 24 times as an adjective in the NT (Wallace says only 292 vocative noun occur, but a search with BibleWorks 8 shows 564).

Examples

Matthew 8:25: ku,rie( sw/son( avpollu,meqa ("Lord, save, we are perishing!")

Luke 10:21: evxomologou/mai, soi( pa,ter( ku,rie tou/ ouvranou/ kai. th/j gh/j ("I give thanks to you, Father, Lord of heaven and of earth")

Acts 7:2: :Andrej avdelfoi. kai. pate,rej( avkou,sate ("Men, brothers, and fathers, listen")

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 6

1st and 2nd Declension Nouns

1st and 2nd Declension Nouns www.exegeticaltools.com • If a noun's stem ends in a or h

If a noun's stem ends in a or h, it is 1st declension (e.g., h` grafh,, stem: grafh&). First declension nouns are usually feminine.

If the stem ends in o, it is second declension (e.g., o` lo,goj, stem: logo-; to, e;rgon, stem: ergo&). Second declension nouns are usually masculine and neuter.

The endings for nouns (all 3 declensions) must be memorized, or translation will be impossible without the help of a parsing program.

Case endings should be memorized on their own (without being attached to a word), or recognizing endings will become much harder later.

There are some feminine second declension nouns, like h` o`do,j. These are declined like masculine second declension nouns, but any articles, adjectives, or other words modifying them will be feminine.

There are some masculine first declension nouns, like o` profh,thj. The -hj ending signals 1st declension, by which pattern the nouns decline, although the gen sg ending will likely be u $profh,tou) rather than j. Other first declension masculine nouns include neani,aj( maqhth,j( and `Hrw,|dhj.

1st and 2nd Declension Case Endings

 

2

1

2

 

masc

fem

neut

nom sg

&j

&

&n

gen sg

&u

&j

&u

dat sg

&i

&i

&i

acc sg

&n

&n

&n

nom pl

&i

&i

&a

gen pl

&wn

&wn

&wn

dat pl

&ij

&ij

&ij

acc pl

&uj

&j

&a

Case Endings Attached to Nouns

 

2

1

2

 

masc

fem

neut

nom sg

lo,goj

grafh,

dw/ron

gen sg

lo,gou

grafh/j

dw,rou

dat sg

lo,gw|

grafh|/

dw,rw|

acc sg

lo,gon

grafh,n

dw/ron

nom pl

lo,goi

grafai,

dw/ra

gen pl

lo,gwn

grafw/n

dw,rwn

dat pl

lo,goij

grafai/j

dw,roij

acc pl

lo,gouj

grafa,j

dw/ra

*An underlined vowel means the ending joins with the stem vowel,

resulting in a contraction, e.g., for

a "nom pl neuter,"

=> a. The resultant form is not e;rgoa, but e[rga)

o + a => oa

*The i in the "dat sg" subscripts and the stem vowel in the second declension lengthens from o to w)

Case Endings Attached to Nouns w/ Article

 

2

1

1

2

 

masc

fem

fem*

neut

nom sg

o` lo,goj

h` grafh,

h` w[ra

to. dw/ron

gen sg

tou/ lo,gou

th/j grafh/j

th/j w[raj

tou/ dw,rou

dat sg

tw|/ lo,gw|

th|/ grafh|/

th|/ w[ra|

tw|/ dw,rw|

acc sg

to.n lo,gon

th.n grafh,n

th.n w[ran

to. dw/ron

nom pl

oi` lo,goi

ai` grafai,

 

ta. dw/ra

gen pl

tw/n lo,gwn

tw/n grafw/n

 

tw/n dw,rwn

dat pl

toi/j lo,goij

tai/j grafai/j

 

toi/j dw,roij

acc pl

tou.j lo,gouj

ta.j grafa,j

 

ta. dw/ra

*Fem words with stems ending in ea( ia $avlh,qeia%( or ra $w[ra% will form the gen and dat sg with a. Otherwise, the a will shift to h. E.g., h` do,xa( th/j do,xhj( th|/ do,xh|( th.n do,xan.

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 7

3rd Declension Nouns

Third declension nouns:

3rd Declension Nouns Third declension nouns: www.exegeticaltools.com • Stems end in a consonant. • Drop &oj

Stems end in a consonant.

Drop &oj ending from genitive to derive stem (e.g., sa,rx( sarko,j( h` shows the stem is sark&).

Memorize the pa/j( pa/sa( pa/n paradigm. It is very important for learning participles.

Example of stems:

sa,rx, h`, stem sark-, flesh evlpi,j, h`, stem evlpid-, hope ca,rij, h`, stem carit-, grace nu,x, h`, stem nukt-, night

3rd declension words can have various stem endings: k&( mat&( and n& are three examples. Words with mat& stems are always neuter; neuters have identical endings in the nominative and accusative.

lexical form

stem

nom sg

gen sg

dat sg

acc sg

nom pl

gen pl

dat pl

acc pl

k stem

h` sa,rx

sark&

sa,rx

sarko,j

sarki,

sa,rka

mat stem

to o;noma

onomat&

o;noma

ovno,matoj

ovno,mati

o;noma

n stem

ti,j (m/f)

tin&

ti,j

ti,noj

ti,ni

ti,na

ti,j (neut)

tin&

ti,

ti,noj

ti,ni

ti,

M/F Endings

&j

&oj

&i

&a

sa,rkej ovno,mata ti,nej

sarkw/n ovnoma,twn ti,nwn ti,nwn &wn

sarxi,$n% ovno,masi$n% ti,si$n%

sa,rkaj ovno,mata ti,naj

ti,na

&ej

ti,si$n%

ti,na

&si$n%

&aj

Neut Endings

&

&oj

&i

&

&a

&wn

&si$n%

&a

pa/j is an excellent word to learn the paradigm for, since it has both 1st and 3rd declensions (both less familiar than 2nd declension words, like lo,goj). For this reason, it is called a 3-1-3 adjective. Memorizing this paradigm will greatly help with learning participles and to remember the third declension endings. The masc and neut stem for pa/j is pant&) The stem for the feminine, 1st declension forms is pasa-. It can be used as an adjective in the attributive or predicate position (pred is more frequent), or substantivally.

nom sg

gen sg

dat sg

acc sg

3rd decl

masc

pa/j

panto,j

panti,

pa,nta

nom pl pa,ntej

gen pl

dat pl

acc pl

pa,ntwn

pa/si$n%

pa,ntaj

1st decl

fem

pa/sa

pa,shj

pa,sh|

pa/san

pa/sai

pasw/n

pa,saij

pa,saj

3rd decl

neut

pa/n

panto,j

panti,

pa/n

pa,nta

pa,ntwn

pa/si$n%

pa,nta

A common, but somewhat irregular verb is pi,stij. Its stem is technically pisti-, but the iota is replaced by an epsilon in some cases. The paradigm should simply be noted for recognition.

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 8

Personal Pronouns

Personal Pronouns www.exegeticaltools.com • Pronouns replace nouns. Personal pronouns replace nouns that refer to

Pronouns replace nouns. Personal pronouns replace nouns that refer to persons.

The following personal pronouns should be memorized for recognition. They are vital for reading Greek with any sense of fluidity.

A pronoun always agrees with its antecedent in gender and number, but its case may differ depending on its function in the sentence. An example in English would be "Tom slept on his bed." Tom is the subject and therefore equivalent to the nominative case, whereas "his" is in the genitive case, since it signals possession.

Since verb endings signals the subject sufficiently, a pronoun is generally not used in the nominative case except for emphasis.

Third person pronouns follow a 2-1-2 pattern, although the nominative and accusative of the singular neuter omits the n on the ending.

The pronoun auvto,j may function in three ways. First, it acts as a third person personal pronoun. Second, it may be used intensively to mean "it/him/her-self." This use of auvto,j will usually be found in the predicate position, although not exclusively (e.g., "the apostle himself" normally = auvto.j o` avpo,stoloj). Third, it may be used as an adjective, usually in the attributive position, to mean "same" (e.g., "the same apostle" normally = o` auvto.j avpo,stoloj).

First Person

 
 

Singular

Plural

N.

evgw,

h`mei/j

G.

mou (evmou/) h`mw/n

D.

moi (evmoi,) h`mi/n

A.

me (evme,)

h`ma/j

Second Person

N.

G.

D.

A.

Singular

su,

sou (sou/) u`mw/n

u`mei/j

Plural

soi (soi,) u`mi/n

u`ma/j

se (se,)

evmou/, evmoi,, and evme, are emphatic forms, as are sou/, soi,, and se,. The emphatic form is generally found after prepositions or in contrastive sentences. It signals a form of emphasis that is difficult to bring out in English.

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 9

Third Person

 

Singular

M.

N.

auvto,j

G.

auvtou/

D.

auvtw|/

A.

auvto,n

Plural

M.

N.

auvtoi,

G.

auvtw/n

D.

auvtoi/j

A.

auvtou,j

F.

N.

auvth,

auvto,

auvth/j

auvtou/

auvth|/

auvtw|/

auvth,n

auvto,

F.

N.

auvtai,

auvta,

auvtw/n

auvtw/n

auvtai/j auvtoi/j

auvta,j

auvta,

Relative Pronouns

Relative Pronouns www.exegeticaltools.com • A relative pronoun introduces a clause that usually modifies (provides

A relative pronoun introduces a clause that usually modifies (provides additional information about) a noun.

The paradigm follows a 2-1-2 pattern. The relative pronouns are almost exactly the endings of the 2-1-2 nouns. The exceptions are the neuter nominative and accusative singular, which are o[ rather than o[n. This paradigm should be memorized.

The case of the relative pronoun is determined by its function in the relative clause. So a relative pronoun that functions as a direct object will appear in the accusative case, even if its antecedent to which it refers is in the nominative case. An exception is called "attraction," which is when a relative pronoun is attracted to the case of its antecedent. One then might, for example, find a relative pronoun as a direct object occuring in the genitive case, if it refers back to a genitive noun. This occurs occasionally and one may save a lot of trouble if this exception is remembered.

The Relative Pronoun

nom sg

gen sg

dat sg

acc sg

nom pl

gen pl

dat pl

acc pl

2

1

2

masc

fem

neut

o[j

h[

o[

ou-

h-j

ou-

w|-

h|-

w|-

o[n

h[n

o[

oi[

ai[

a[

w-n

w-n

w-n

oi-j

ai-j

oi-j

ou[j

a[j

a[

Notice the accent on the relative pronouns, which helps you distinguish it from the article in a few forms that might otherwise be confused.

The Article

 

masc

fem

nom sg

o`

h`

nom pl

oi`

ai`

The Relative Pronoun

 

masc

fem

nom sg

o[j

h[

nom pl

oi[

ai[

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 10

Demonstrative Pronouns

Demonstrative Pronouns www.exegeticaltools.com • Demonstrative pronouns in Greek work similarly to those in English.

Demonstrative pronouns in Greek work similarly to those in English. The paradigms follow a 2-1-2 pattern and are easy to recognize. Memorize these forms so you can recognize them instantly while reading.

Demonstrative pronouns always stand in the predicate position rather than the attributive position, just like pa/j. The article always stands with the noun that the pronoun modifies. Hence, one might see ou-toj o` lo,goj, but not o` ou-toj lo,goj.

ou-toj , this

Singular

M. F.

N.

N. ou-toj

G.

D.

A.

tou,tou

tou,tw|

tou/ton

au[th

tau,thj tou,tou

tau,th|

tau,thn tou/to

tou/to

tou,tw|

Plural

N.

G.

D.

A.

M.

F.

N.

ou-toi

au-tai

tau/ta

tou,twn tou,twn tou,twn tou,toij tau,taij tou,toij tou,touj tau,taj tau/ta

evkei/noj, that

Singular

M. F.

N.

N. evkei/noj

G.

D.

A.

Plural

evkei,nh

evkei/no

evkei,nou evkei,nhj evkei,nou

evkei,nw| evkei,nh| evkei,nw|

evkei/non evkei,nhn evkei/no

N.

G.

D.

A.

M. F.

N.

evkei/noi

evkei,nwn evkei,nwn evkei,nwn

evkei,noij evkei,naij evkei,noij

evkei,nouj evkei,naj evkei/na

evkei/nai evkei/na

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 11

Reflexive Pronouns

Reflexive Pronouns www.exegeticaltools.com • The declensions for reflexive pronouns are the same as for auvto,j

The declensions for reflexive pronouns are the same as for auvto,j (2-1-2) pattern, except there is no nominative form.

You should be able to recognize these forms.

evmautou/( of myself

seautou/( of yourself

e`autou/( of himself/herself/itself

G.

D.

A.

G.

D.

A.

Singular

Singular

Singular

M.

F.

M.

F.

M.

F.

N.

evmautou/ evmauth/j

G.

seautou/ seauth/j

G.

e`autou/

e`auth/j e`autou/

evmautw|/ evmauth|/

D.

seautw|/ seauth|/

D.

e`autw|/

e`auth|/

e`autw|/

evmauto,n evmauth,n

A.

seauto,n seauth,n

A.

e`auto,n

e`auth,n e`auto,

Plural

Plural

Plural

e`autw/n e`autw/n

G.

e`autw/n e`autw/n

G.

e`autw/n e`autw/n e`autw/n

e`autoi/j e`autai/j

D.

e`autoi/j e`autai/j

D.

e`autoi/j e`autai/j e`autoi/j

e`autou,j e`auta

A.

e`autou,j e`auta,j

A.

e`autou,j e`auta,j e`auta,

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 12

Interrogative and Indefinite Pronouns

Interrogative and Indefinite Pronouns www.exegeticaltools.com • The interrogative pronoun ti,j ("who? which?

The interrogative pronoun ti,j ("who? which? what?") differs from the indefinite pronoun tij ("someone, something") only by the accent. The accent on the interrogative pronoun always falls on the penult (unless it is monosyllabic, in which case there is still an accent), while the accent on the indefinite pronoun always falls on the ultima (unless the form is monosyllabic, in which case there is no accent).

Both pronouns can be used as independent nouns or as adjectives.

These pronouns are what we call "two-termination adjectives," because the male and female forms are the same. All forms follow the third declension.

The Interrogative Pronoun (ti,j)

N.

G.

D.

A.

N.

G.

D.

A.

Singular

M/F

ti,j

ti,noj

ti,ni

ti,na

Plural

ti,nej

ti,nwn

ti,si(n)

ti,naj

N

ti,

ti,noj

ti,ni

ti,

ti,na

ti,nwn

ti,si(n)

ti,na

The Indefinite Pronoun (tij)

N.

G.

D.

A.

N.

G.

D.

A.

Singular

M/F

N

tij

ti

tino,j

tino,j

tini,

tini,

tina,

ti

Plural

tine,j

tina,

tinw/n

tinw/n

tisi,(n)

tisi,(n)

tina,j

tina,

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 13

The Article

The Article www.exegeticaltools.com • The lexical form of the article in Greek is o` (nominative, singular,

The lexical form of the article in Greek is o` (nominative, singular, masculine).

The article in Greek has several functions and acts as more than simply to make a noun definite (see Wallace's Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics, 207-290). However, making a noun definite is one of its primary uses. Thus, h` grafh, means "the Scripture" rather than "a Scripture."

If

the article is missing, the noun is not necessarily indefinite. For example, John 1:1 says o` lo,goj h=n

pro.j to.n qeo,n( kai. qeo.j h=n o` lo,goj ("the word was with God, and the word was God"). Note that qeo,n

("God") has an article in the first phrase, but not in the second (the difference in spelling is because qeo,n

is

accusative while qeo,j is nominative). The lack of the article in the second phrase does not make the

noun indefinite ("a god"), which is obvious because it refers to the same "God" as the first phrase, which has the article.

Another case in which the article will sometimes be missing on a definite noun is when the noun follows

a preposition. For example, in Col 1:2, Paul says "Grace to you, and peace avpo. qeou/ patro.j h`mw/n." The noun "God" in this case is definite and should not be translated "a God."

The Greek Article

 

masc

fem

neut

nom sg

o`

h`

to,

gen sg

tou/

th/j

tou/

dat sg

tw|/

th|/

tw|/

acc sg

to,n

th,n

to,

nom pl

oi`

ai`

ta,

gen pl

tw/n

tw/n

tw/n

dat pl

toi/j

tai/j

toi/j

acc pl

tou,j

ta,j

ta,

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 14

Adjectives

Adjectives www.exegeticaltools.com • Adjectives function in three ways: (1) they modify nouns ("the good

Adjectives function in three ways: (1) they modify nouns ("the good man"); (2) they act as substantives ("the good [things/people]); (3) they act as predicate adjectives ("the man is good"). If the adjective is an attributive adjective (the first use), it will fall in one of four attributive positions. If it is a predicate adjective, it will fall in one of three predicate positions. See the "Attributive and Predicate Positions" handout.

Adjectives may be either masculine, feminine, or neuter.

If the adjective has distinct forms for all three genders (in the nominative singular), it is called a three- termination adjective. For example, kalo,j( kalh,( kalo,n.

If the adjective has the same ending for the masculine and feminine genders, and a different ending for the neuter gender, it is called a two-termination adjectives. Most of these adjectives are compounds. For example, a;pistoj (masc & fem)( a;piston (neuter). It is important to know if an adjective is two- termination in order to identify the correct gender of the adjective in context and thereby to identify the noun it modifies.

Adjectives use the same case endings as nouns (although there are irregular patterns for some adjectives as well). Many adjectives follow a 2-1-2 pattern, meaning the masculine and accusative follow the second declension, while the feminine follows the first declension. Some follow a 3-1-3 pattern, such as pa/j, which is an important adjective paradigm to memorize after one has memorized third declension noun patterns.

[Advanced Info] Adjectives that end in -eoj( -ooj are generally contracted according to the rules. For example, the uncontracted form of "golden" would be cru,seoj, but the ending -eoj contracts to -ou/j, with the circumflex accent to signal a contraction has occurred. Lexicons typically list the word in its contracted form, however, so you will learn it in its final form (crusou/j).

Irregular adjectives to recognize: polu,j ("many") is a 2-1-2 adjective, but some forms have stem pol- (nom

and acc of masc and neut), while the rest of the forms have stem poll-.

avgaqo,j( h,,( o,n, good

 

2nd decl

masc nom sg avgaqo,j

gen sg avgaqou/

dat sg

avgaqw|/

acc sg avgaqo,n

1st decl

2nd decl

fem

neut

avgaqh,

avgaqo,n

avgaqh/j 1 avgaqou/ avgaqh|/ avgaqw|/

avgaqh,n avgaqo,n

nom pl

avgaqoi,

gen pl avgaqw/n dat pl avgaqoi/j acc pl avgaqou,j

avgaqai, avgaqa,

avgaqw/n avgaqw/n avgaqai/j avgaqoi/j avgaqa,j avgaqa,

1 If the feminine form of the adjective ends in ea( ia( or ra, the singular forms will use a for all the case endings (e.g., a[giai( a`gi,wn( a`gi,aij( a`gi,aj).

pa/j( pa/sa( pa/n all (stem: pant-, pasa-)

3rd decl 1st decl 3rd decl

 

masc

nom sg pa/j gen sg panto,j

dat sg

panti,

acc sg

pa,nta

nom pl pa,ntej

fem

neut

pa/sa

pa/n

pa,shj

panto,j

pa,sh|

panti,

pa/san

pa/n

pa/sai

pa,nta

gen pl

dat pl

acc pl

pa,ntwn

pa/si$n% pa,saij pa/si$n%

pa,ntaj

pa,ntwn pasw/n

pa,saj

pa,nta

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 15

Attributive and Predicate Positions

Attributive and Predicate Positions www.exegeticaltools.com • Why are these important? Knowing the attributive and

Why are these important? Knowing the attributive and predicate positions allows you to:

(1) easily identify adjectival constructions (including difficult ones, such as when prepositional phrases are used as adjectives). (2) distinguish between adjectival phrases (the good man) and predicative phrases (the man is good), which use the same Greek words but in different orders.

In the following charts, keep in mind that prepositional phrases and participles can act as adjectives and would stand in the same position.

Attributive (Adjectival) Positions

Position

Greek Example

English Translation

Notes

1st Attr. Pos.

o` avgaqo.j a;nqrwpoj

the good man (lit., "the good man")

Adjective receives greater emphasis than the substantive

2nd Attr. Pos.

o` a;nqrwpoj o` avgaqo,j

the good man (lit., "the man the good" or "the man, the good one")

Equal emphasis on adjective and substantive (possibly slight emphasis on the latter)

3rd Attr. Pos.

a;nqrwpoj o` avgaqo,j

the good man (lit., "man the good")

Rare with adjectives, but more frequent with prepositional phrases or participles acting as an adjective

4th Attr. Pos.

a;nqrwpoj avgaqo,j OR

the (or "a") good man

No article; either order is valid; can only distinguish from 3rd pred. pos. by context

avgaqo.j a;nqrwpoj

(lit., "good man" or "man good")

Predicate Positions (hint: article is always with the noun and no article with adjective)

Position

Greek Example

English Translation

Notes

1st Pred. Pos.

avgaqo.j o` a;nqrwpoj

the man is good (lit., "good is the man")

Adjective receives greater emphasis than the substantive; it is ok to translate literally to reflect this emphasis, e.g., "blessed are the peacemakers" (Matt 5:9).

2nd Pred. Pos.

o` a;nqrwpoj avgaqo,j

the man is good (lit., "the man is good")

Equal emphasis on adjective and substantive (possibly slight emphasis on the latter)

3rd Pred. Pos.

a;nqrwpoj avgaqo,j OR avgaqo.j a;nqrwpoj

the man is good (lit., "good man" or "man good")

No article; either order is valid; can only distinguish from 4th attr. pos. by context

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 16

Verbal System

Verbal System www.exegeticaltools.com • The following terms must be understood if one wishes to understand any

The following terms must be understood if one wishes to understand any verbal system.

Tense: The form of the verb (e.g., present-tense form, aorist-tense form, etc.). Tense-forms correspond to a certain aspect (see below), but do not correspond exactly with time. For example, in Greek, many but not all present tense-forms occur in present time, and most but not all past tense-forms occur in past time. So when we refer to "tense," we're referring to the form of the verb, not necessarily to the time of its action.

Voice: The relationship between the agent of the verb and the action expressed. There are three voices in Greek: active, passive, and middle. With the active voice, the subject is performing the action. With the passive voice, the subject is being acted upon. The middle voice is difficult to translate into English, but typically it expresses the subject acting in his own interest.

Mood: The relationship between the verb and reality. In Greek, there are several moods. Indicative is used when the verb is true to reality. Other moods that reflect less correspondence between the verb and reality are the subjunctive, optative, and imperative.

Person: The perspective of the subject of the verb. The subject of any verb is either the first person ("I, we"), second person ("you"), or third person ("he, she, it, they,").

Number: The number of entities involved in the subject. Nouns are either singular or plural.

Aspect: The perspective from which the action of the verb is portrayed. Some parts of aspect theory in

Koine Greek are still being debated by scholars.

When parsing verbs, you will give tense, voice, mood, person, and number. Some grammars give a different order, but the more popular grammars give this order. So, for example, e;luen should be parsed as "imperfect, active, indicative, 3rd person, singular" (or abbreviated, "impf, act, ind, 3rd, sg"). It is not common to give the aspect of a verb when parsing, but it is important exegetically, and should be considered mentally at least.

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 17

Master Indicative Verb Chart www.exegeticaltools.com
Master Indicative Verb Chart
www.exegeticaltools.com

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 18

Present Active Indicative

Formation of the Present Active Indicative:

Indicative Formation of the Present Active Indicative: www.exegeticaltools.com Present Tense Stem +

Present Tense Stem

+

Connecting Vowel

+

Primary Active Personal Endings

λυ

+

ο/ε

+

μεν (1 pl)

Indicative mood describes something factual, asks a question, or states an opinion.

The present-tense form expresses "imperfective aspect," which portrays the action as a process, with no focus on the beginning or the end of the action. The focus could thus be on the continual nature of the action (e.g., βλέπετε [Col 2:8]) or the fact that the action is in progress (e.g., ποιοῦσιν [Matt 12:2]).

The tense stem is the building block of the verb and carries the essential meaning. Thus, λυ- carries the meaning "to loose," while the personal endings describe the person (1st, 2nd, 3rd) and number (sg, pl) of those doing the action.

"Primary" personal endings are used with present and future tense-forms. "Secondary" personal endings come later.

"Active" is a voice, the alternatives being "passive" and "middle." With the active voice, the subject is the agent (the actor) of the action expressed by the verb. Present Active Indicative (λύω )

 

Stem

Connecting

Personal

Final Form

Translation

Vowel

Endings

1

sg

λυ

ο

-

λύ ω 1

I am loosing

2

sg

λυ

ε

ς

λύ εις 2

You are loosing

3

sg

λυ

ε

ι

λύ ει

He/she/it is loosing

1

pl

λυ

ο

μεν

λύ ομεν

We are loosing

2

pl

λυ

ε

τε

λύ ετε

You all are loosing

3

pl

λυ

ο

νσι

λύ ουσι(ν) 3

They are loosing

1 Omicron lengthens to omega at the end of the word. 2 The ending is actually si, but it is as if "metathesis" has occurred (the letters have switched places), so lu,esi => lu,eij. 3 The n drops out and the connecting vowel o lengthens to ou to compensate for the loss ( luonsi => luosi => lu,ousi).

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 19

Present Passive and Middle Indicative

Formation of the Present Active Indicative:

Indicative Formation of the Present Active Indicative: www.exegeticaltools.com Present Tense Stem +

Present Tense Stem

+

Connecting Vowel

+

Primary Passive Personal Endings

lu

!

o/e

!

meqa (1 pl)

Indicative mood describes something factual, asks a question, or states an opinion.

The present-tense form denotes "imperfective aspect," which displays the action as incomplete, with no focus on the beginning or the end of the action. The focus could thus be on the continual nature of the action (like ble,pete [Col 2:8]) or the fact that the action is in progress (e.g., poiou/sin [Matt 12:2]).

The tense stem is the building block of the verb and carries the essential meaning. Thus, lu& carries the meaning "to loose," while the personal endings describe the person (1st, 2nd, 3rd) and number (sg, pl) of those doing the action.

"Passive" and "middle" are voices. Passive means the subject is being acted upon. Middle voice is difficult to describe in English, but it is typically an active sense and its meaning should be consulted in a lexicon.

In the present tense, the passive and middle voice share the same conjugation. One must decide whether the same form is being used in the passive or middle voice based on the context.

Verbs that appear in only a passive or middle form, but have an active meaning, are called "deponent" verbs. Two common examples are poreu,omai ("I go") and e;rcomai ("I come").

Present Passive Indicative (lu,w)

 

Stem

Connecting

Personal

Final Form

Translation

Vowel

Endings

1 sg

lu

o

mai

lu, o mai

I am being loosed

2 sg

lu

e

sai

lu, h| 1

You are being loosed

3 sg

lu

e

tai

lu, e tai

He/she/it is being loosed

1 pl

lu

o

meqa

lu o, meqa

We are being loosed

2 pl

lu

e

sqe

lu, e sqe

You are being loosed

3 pl

lu

o

ntai

lu, o ntai

They are being loosed

1 The form luesai contracts as follows. The s drops out because it stands between two vowels not in the stem, leaving lueai. The vowels then contract, with ea contracting to h and the iota subscripts, leaving lu,h|. However, the ending sai will show up later and should be memorized.

Present Middle/Deponent Indicative (e;rcomai)

 

Stem

Connecting

Personal

Final Form

Translation

Vowel

Endings

1 sg

e;rc

o

mai

e;rc o mai

I come

2 sg

e;rc

e

sai

e;rc h|

You come

3 sg

e;rc

e

tai

e;rc e tai

He/she/it comes

1 pl

e;rc

o

meqa

evrc o, meqa

We come

2 pl

e;rc

e

sqe

e;rc e sqe

You all come

3 pl

e;rc

o

ntai

e;rc o ntai

They come

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 20

Imperfect Active Indicative

Formation of the Imperfect Active Indicative:

Indicative Formation of the Imperfect Active Indicative: www.exegeticaltools.com Augment Present Tense Stem +

Augment

Present Tense Stem

+

Connecting Vowel

+

Secondary Active Personal Endings

e

+

lu

!

o/e

!

men (1 pl)

Indicative mood describes something factual, asks a question, or states an opinion.

The imperfect tense-form, like the present tense-form expresses "imperfective aspect," which displays the action as incomplete, with no focus on the beginning or the end of the action.

The imperfect uses the present tense stem.

"Secondary" personal endings are used with past tense-forms. There are both active and passive secondary endings.

The augment is a vowel prefixed to the stem. In Koine Greek it generally (if not always) indicates past time.

If the verb begins with a single vowel, it will lengthen. Vowels a( e lengthen to h; o lengthens to w. Vowels h( i( u( w lengthen but do not change to a different vowel. E.g., avgapa,w => hvga,pwn* evgei,rw => h;geiron)

If the verb begins with a dipthong, lengthening still occurs: ai( ei => h|; oi => w|; au( eu => hu. E.g., euvcariste,w => huvcari,stoun.

If the verb is compound (prefixed by a preposition), the augment occurs between the preposition and verb. E.g., katabai,nw => kate,bainon.

With prepositions that end in a vowel (like kata above), that vowel will usually drop out $one exception is peripate,w => periepa,toun).

Prefix evk will change to evx $evkba,llw => evxe,ballon).

Imperfect Active Indicative (lu,w)

 

Augment

Stem

Connecting

Personal

Final Form

Translation

Vowel

Endings

1 sg

e

lu

o

n

e; lu o n

I was loosing

2 sg

e

lu

e

j

e; lu e j

You were loosing

3 sg

e

lu

e

- $n%

e; lu e $n%

He/she/it was loosing

1 pl

e

lu

o

men

ev lu, o men

We were loosing

2 pl

e

lu

e

te

ev lu, e te

You were loosing

3 pl

e

lu

o

n $san% 1

e; lu o n

They were loosing

1 The ending san shows up, e.g., in the 3rd person plural of eivmi, in the imperfect indicative: h=san.

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 21

Imperfect Middle/Passive Indicative

Formation of the Imperfect Active Indicative:

Indicative Formation of the Imperfect Active Indicative: www.exegeticaltools.com Augment Present Tense Stem +

Augment

Present Tense Stem

+

Connecting Vowel

+

Secondary Middle/Passive Personal Endings

e

!

lu

!

o/e

!

mhn (1 sg)

Indicative mood describes something factual, asks a question, or states an opinion.

The imperfect uses the present tense stem.

 

 

on augment lengthening, see the handout on the Imperfect Active Indicative.

 

Imperfect Middle/Passive Indicative (lu,w)

 
 

Augment

Stem

Connecting

Personal

Final Form

Translation

Vowel

Endings

 

1

sg

e

lu

o

mhn

ev lu o, mhn

I was being loosed

 

2

sg

e

lu

e

u $so% 1

ev lu, o u

You were being loosed

 

3

sg

e

lu

e

to

ev lu, e to

He/she/it was being loosed

 

1

pl

e

lu

o

meqa

ev lu o, meqa

We were being loosed

 

2

pl

e

lu

e

sqe

ev lu, e sqe

You were being loosed

 

3

pl

e

lu

o

nto

ev lu, o nto

They were being loosed

The imperfect tense-form, like the present tense-form expresses "imperfective aspect," which displays the action as incomplete, with no focus on the beginning or the end of the action.

"Secondary" personal endings are used with past tense-forms. There are both active and passive secondary endings.

The augment is a vowel prefixed to the stem. In Koine Greek it generally (if not always) indicates past time. For rules

1 The original ending is so, but s drops out since it is between two vowels not in the stem, and eo contracts to ou (evlu,eso => evlu,eo => evlu,ou). Note that the connecting vowel is properly e, but it changes to o in the contraction.

Exegetical Tools Greek Primer Page 22

Contract Verbs

Contract Verbs www.exegeticaltools.com  Contract verbs have stems ending in: a ( avgapa,w ), e $euvcariste,w%(

Contract verbs have stems ending in: a (avgapa,w), e $euvcariste,w%( o $plhro,w%)

Contract verbs occur only in the present and imperfect tense-forms.

The lexical form will show the contract vowel (avgapa,w), but the contracted form will show in the text (avgapw/).

There will almost always be a circumflex over the contracted vowels in the present indicative.

The vowel before a tense formative will generally lengthen. E.g., timh,sw( evti,mhsa etc., not tima,sw, evti,masa, etc.

Rules of Contraction (memorize if possible; definitely learn to recognize)

ou

<=

eo

poiou/men

<=

poieomen

ou

<=

oe

plhrou/te

<=

plhroete

ei

<=

ee

poiei/te

<=

poieete

w

<=

ao

avgapw/men <=

avgapaomen

w

<= aou

avgapw/si

<=

avgapaousi

a

<=

ae

avgapa/ta

<=

avgapaete

a|

<= aei

avgapa/|

<=

avgapaei

a + ein in present active infinitive is a/n

o + ein in present active infinitive is ou/n

When a and e meet, whichever letter comes first wins out and becomes long. So above, see ae contracts to long a. Now see how ea contracts to long e, which is h)

h|

<= eai

poih/|

<=

poihi

<= poieai 2

<=

poiesai 1

oi

<= oei

plhroi/j

<=

plhroeij

 

plhroi/

<=

plhroei

If the contract vowel and the first vowel of a diphthong are the same, the redundant letter drops out.

ei <= eei

ou <= oou

If the contract vowel and the first vowel of a diphthong are different, they contract.

a|

<= aei

ou

<= eou

Present Active Indicative of tima,w

1 This form is present middle/passive. This is the reason the 3rd person singular in the present middle/passive has two possible endings, sai and h|. 2 The sigma drops out because it is between two vowels.

Chart of Verb Contractions

(left column is first letter, top row is second letter)

1

2

3

1

2

3

sg

( tima,w )

=>

sg

( tima,eij )

=>

sg

( tima,ei )

=>

pl

( tima,omen ) =>

pl

( tima,ete )

=>

timw/

tima|/j

tima|/

timw/men

tima/te

pl ( tima,ousi(n) ) => timw/si(n)

 

a

e

h

o

w

ei

h|

ou

oi